‘We found no cholinesterase inhibitors in Navalny's blood’: Omsk's chief toxicologist comments on statement from Berlin's Charite

Doctors who cared for Moscow protest leader Alexey Navalny in Siberia last week found no cholinesterase inhibitors in his blood during their tests. That’s according to the Omsk region’s top toxicologist.

Alexander Sabayev told journalists on Monday evening that the anti-corruption activist was examined for a wide range of narcotics, synthetic substances, psychedelic drugs and medical substances and the results were negative.

“When Alexey Navalny was admitted to the in-patient clinic, he was examined for a wide range of narcotics, synthetic substances, psychedelic drugs and medical substances, including cholinesterase inhibitors. The result was negative,” said Sabayev, chief of the acute poisoning unit at the Omsk emergency care hospital where Navalny was treated before being airlifted to Germany.

“Besides, he did not have a clinical picture, specific for poisoning with substances from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors,” Sabayev, who is also the top toxicologist in the Omsk Region and the Siberian Federal District, added. “As was already said earlier, we are ready to share with our German colleagues samples of Alexey Navalny’s biomaterial for their comprehensive study.”

Last Thursday, a plane carrying Navalny made an emergency landing in Omsk after he suddenly felt ill mid-flight. The protest leader was rushed to hospital, placed in an induced coma, and connected to a ventilator.

On Saturday, he was airlifted to Berlin’s Charite hospital for medical treatment. His German doctors issued a statement on Navalny’s condition on Monday.

“Clinical findings indicate poisoning with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. The specific substance involved remains unknown,” they said in the statement. “Alexey Navalny’s prognosis remains unclear; the possibility of long-term effects, particularly those affecting the nervous system, cannot be excluded.”

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